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Delays highlighted in patient survey

Over 70 per cent of patients have reported not being admitted to a ward within the HSE’s target waiting time of six hours in the new National Inpatient Experience Survey.

The results of the survey were published today and it pointed to a number of areas where the HSE could improve.

The results noted that 70 per cent of people said that they were not admitted to a ward within the HSE’s target, with 331 people (4 per cent) waiting 48 hours or more before being admitted.

According to HIQA “Long waiting times have been linked with negative health outcomes and pose a risk to patient safety.

However according to the statement from HIQA the 2019 findings also show some improvements on last year, with patients reporting more positive experiences of discharge or transfer procedures. The Authority noted that questions on dignity, respect and privacy scored highly, and the majority of people gave a very positive rating of the cleanliness of rooms or wards. In addition, most people said that they trusted and had confidence in hospital staff.

However the results also found that many people said that there was not enough time to discuss their treatment with medical staff, and felt that they were not fully involved in decisions about their care or their discharge from hospital.

“Although the majority of patients reported positively on their time in hospital, a large number of patients did not,” said Ms Rachel Flynn, Director of the National Care Experience Programme at HIQA.

“Significantly, women and younger people tended to report less positive experiences than men and people over the age of 50, as did patients of larger hospitals.

“While discharge planning has improved, there is still more to do, with many patients saying that they did not receive enough information on their condition, their medication or how to care for themselves at home.”

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